A motor vehicle collision can quickly lead to financial peril. From lost wages to property damage to medical bills, a serious crash can doom an entire family. Fortunately, car insurance exists to lessen the overwhelming debt an injured driver might face. But what happens if the at-fault driver is uninsured or doesn’t carry enough coverage to compensate the other motorist?
It is uncommon, but it still happens, that drivers are on the road illegally. California drivers are required to carry certain minimum insurance coverages in the event they cause a crash. Some drivers let their policies lapse or simply ignore the state’s driving regulations. Fortunately, insurance carriers typically provide additional coverage to help should disaster strike.
If you are worried about being in an accident with a driver who is uninsured or underinsured, you can explore coverage in your policy.
- Uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI): This is designed to pay for injuries you or any vehicle occupants suffered as a result of a collision caused by an uninsured driver.
- Uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD): This is designed to pay for damage to your vehicle in a collision caused by an uninsured driver. The coverage total is limited, however, but might be superfluous if you have “collision coverage.”
- Underinsured motorist (UIM): This is designed to cover medical treatment for bodily injuries as a result of damage caused by an underinsured motorist. Underinsured, in this case, refers to the possibility that the total cost of your treatment might exceed the amount of coverage the at-fault driver carries.
Insurance policies can be complex and insurance carriers might not be willing to pay out a significant sum of money after an accident. Insurance carriers have been known to act in “bad faith” by delaying, devaluing or denying claims brought by their policy holders. If you worry that your insurance carrier is not honoring the policy, it is wise to discuss your situation with an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney.